Strange Loop

Key to the City: Writing Code to Induce Social Change

At this point in our human existence, we are witnesses to the problem set of Inequality in Society. Empathy drives us to want to recognize these bugs in our society. At times our personal biases, tribalism, individual circumstances and experiences distort the inequalities in this society from our view. What we know is that everyone is not afforded the same experiences, that this world treats everyone differently. Our empathy speaks, informing us that there are others living with persistent challenges crafted by history and by the actions of all citizens in aggregate. Those whose unfair treatment is left unaddressed by society serve as our verifiers for measuring how far we are from the goal post of equality in all social contexts. My hypothesis: There exists a surface area of influence that software development has on social justice that makes inequality in society solvable as an NP problem where any solutions to instances of inequality can be verified in polynomial time. Our hypothesis, empathy, source code, networking, resources and data, can help us build a model to minimize inequality. Our oppressed populations, act as the verifiers of our proposed solutions fully capable of responding in polynomial time.

Jurnell Cockhren

Jurnell Cockhren


Having over a decade of experience in creating and contributing to open source software with a work history spanning Neuroscience, Optics and Astronomy provides an enriched perspective of the applied sciences. With the founding of Sophicware, a Civic Tech firm, a world where social inequities are addressed through technology is now possible. Such a mission, requires making Open Data more accessible to the general public. In this world, collaboration serves as arbiter for addressing social ails. Serving as a catalyst transforming of Open Data into information: Jurnell Cockhren, Founder of Sophicware & Civic Hacker. Experience and affiliations include the NAACP, Python Software Foundation, the National Society of Black Engineers and Vanderbilt University.